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Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace
Kensington Palace
#About the Palace of the Princes of England

Kensington Palace lies in Kensington Gardens, within the grounds of the Royal Quarter of Kensington and Chelsea in London. This is the palace where one of the most popular and beloved couples in the world lives today - Prince William and Kate Middleton, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, along with their children George, Prince of Cambridge and their daughter, Princess Charlotte of Cambridge.

William's brother, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, lives in the palace. Unlike their private rooms, the state rooms in the palace are run by the Royal Palace Authority and are open to the public for visits.

#The History of Kensington Palace

The original palace structure was founded by the Count of Nottingham at the beginning of the 17th century. Kensington was a small village at the time he set up his country house on the site and called it "Nottingham House."

The Count's grandson sold the palace to King William III at the end of the 17th century. The King desired a summer house far from filthy London due to the asthma he suffered from. The access to Kensington, located just outside London, was easier for the king than the access to the Hampton Court, where he had to sail on the Thames.

After the palace was enlarged and adjusted to the satisfaction of the new landlord, the king and the royal court moved into it. For many years, it was simply called "Kensington House" and not a palace. It was from these gardens that fruits and vegetables were taken and sent to St. James' Palace, the official residence of the royal family.

Although their official place of residence remained St. James's Palace, Kensington Palace continued to serve as a favorite among the British monarchs in the 18th century. Queen Victoria was born and baptized in the palace in 1819.

Mary II passed away in the palace in 1694, and it is the very same place King William was brought, after he had fallen from his horse at Hampton Court and took is last breaths. After the death of the two, Queen Anne moved here.

King George II was the last British monarch to live in the palace. Since his death, the princes of the royal family continued to live in the palace, but the kings themselves did not return to live here. The most famous couple in the world, Charles, Prince of Wales and his wife Diana, perhaps the most beloved Princess in the history of the British royal family, moved here immediately after they married. Even after the divorce of the couple until the day of her death, the palace remains the official residence of Princess Diana.

#The Architecture of the Palace

In preparation for the King’s relocation to the palace, a private road was paved from Westminster to Kensington. Architect Christopher Wren enlarged the palace. He built two additional pavilions in the palace and added a council hall, a royal prayer chapel and living quarters for the king, as well as a very impressive staircase. Wren also planned and built a central courtyard at the entrance in addition to the southern and northern wings of the palace.

In 1704 the Orangery was built by John Vanbrugh. It was by Henry Weiss’s plans that the large palace gardens were planted here - on an area of ​​ 121,000 square meters.

In 1722 the "dome room", the official state hall of the palace, was designed by William Kent. Queen Victoria, born in the palace in 1819 was baptized in the state hall.

King George II ordered Charles Bridgeman to renew the gardens of the palace. It is at this point that the official royal gardens resembled the Kensington Gardens of today. The gardens were designed to fit the nature of English country gardens. It was at this point that the circular lake was added to the gardens as well

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